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industry; that is, he had paid a diligent and constant attention to his own interest. He understood business, and had a knack of turning almost every thing to his own advantage. He had that sort of sense, which good men call cunning, and knaves call wisdom. He was too prudent ever to do any thing fo wrong that the law could take hold of him; yet he was not over scrupulous about the morality of an action, when the prospect of enriching himself by it was very great, and the chance of hurting his character was small. The corn he fent hoime to his customers was not always quite so good as the samples he had produced at market; and he now and then forgot to name some capital blemith in the horses he fold at fair. He scorned to be guilty of the petty frauds of cheating in weights and measures; for he thought that was a beggarly fin; but he valued himself on his kill in making a bargain, and fancied it thewed his superior knowledge
he coming the
of the world to take advantage of the ignorance of a dealer. - It was his constant rule to undervalue every thing he was about to buy, and to overvalue every thing he was about to sell; but as he seldom lost fight of his discretion, he avoided every thing that was very shameful; fo that he was considered merely as a hard dealer, and a keen hand at a bargain. Now and then, when he had been caught in pushing his own advantage too far, he contrived to get out of the scrape by turning the whole into a jest, saying it was a good take in, a rare joke, and that he had only a mind to divert himself with the folly of his neighbour, who could be so easily imposed on.
Mr. Bragwell, however, in his way, set a high value on character : not indeed that he had a right sense of its worth; he did not consider reputation as desirable because it increases influence, and for that reason strengthens the hands of a good man, and enlarges his sphere of usefulness: but he
Bragwell's father had been ploughman in the family of Mr. Worthy's uncle, a sensible man, who farmed a small estate of his own, and who having no children, bred up young Worthy as his son, instructed him in the business of husbandry, and at his death left him his estate. The father of Worthy was a pious clergyman, who lived with his brother the farmer, in order to help out a narrow income: He had bestowed much pains on the instrućtion of his son, and used frequently to repeat to him a saying, which he had picked up in a book written by one of the greatest men this country ever produced — That there were two things with which every man ought to be acquainted, RELIGION AND HIS OWN BUSINESS.While he there. fore took care that his son should be made an excellent Farmer, he filled up his leisure hours in improving his mind; so that young Worthy had read more good books, and understood them better, than most
men in his station. His reading however had been chiefly 'confined to husbandry and divinity, the two subjects which were of the moft immediate importance to him."
The reader will see by this time that Mr. Bragwell and Mr. Worthy were likely to be as opposite to each other as two men could well be, who were nearly of the fame age and condition, and who were neither of them without credit in the world. Bragwell indeed made far the greater figure; for he liked to cut a dash, as he called it. It was his delight to make the antient gentry of the neighbourhood ftare, at seeing a grazier vie with them in show, and exceed them in expence. And while it was the study of Worthy to conform to his station, and to set a good example to those about him, it was the delight of Bragwell to eclipse, in his way of life, men of larger fortune. He did not see how much this vanity raised the envy of his inferiors, the ill-will of his equals, and the contempt of his betters. .
· His wife was a notable stirring woman, but vain, violent, and ambitious; very ignorant, and very high-minded. She had married Bragwell before he was worth a Thilling, and as she had brought him a good deal of money, she thought herself the grand cause of his rising in the world; and thence took occafion to govern him most completely. Whenever he ventured to oppose her, she took care to put him in mind that he owed every thing to her; that had it not been for her he might still have been stumping after a plough-tail, or serv. ing hogs in old Worthy's farm-yard; but that it was the who had made a gentleman of him. In order to set about making him a gentleman she had begun by teazing him till he had turned away all his poor relations who worked in the farm: the next drew him off from keeping company with his old acquaintance; and at last persuaded him to remove from the place where he had got his money. Poor woman! the had not sense and virtue enough to see